Pandemic Outing…

Yesterday was a beautiful morning, so we drove to town, stopped at our favorite coffee shop for take-n-go drinks and took off.

Took off for a drive up a nearby mountain pass. The spring melt has the rivers flowing at near peak capacity.

Fresh Mountain River

The morning air, fresh and cool, offers the fragrance of spring. One could smell the earth, the heat generating from the rocks and the moisture in the shade under the trees. The sound of the water racing downhill, roaring over rock walls, splash landing at the base before flowing into the river filled the air. In one location, the cool spray carried gently by the breeze, brushed against my face.

The roar of water, rushing and gushing downhill

In another location, we sat nearby and absorbed the sensations of being by water, out in nature.

Honestly, at one site, I got dizzy sitting there. We were in the truck, parked close to the river’s edge. The sights and sounds were relaxing, refreshing yet simultaneously invigorating. As I sat and watched the water, I got the sense the vehicle was moving. It wasn’t. Yet the water was so intense, so fast and so mesmerizing, I lost track of everything else.

Are we moving?

Perhaps these photos will take you to these places also…

Life Changes…

I’ve been part of a “Writing Through the Pandemic” group. It’s been an interesting process which sometimes surprises me at what surfaces. You can find some these writing on my blog under the following menu options: “Writing Categories” and then select “Pandemic”. Feel free to leave your comments or write your own thoughts.

Together, we’ll get through this!

New Buds Growing

Everything is a process

Processes have invisible strands that tie the pieces together

For me the process started in late spring of 2019

Spending 10 weeks in the southwest of Ireland and England left me shaken

The recognition of my own materialism hit hard

The crazy pace of my life was revealed as just that—crazy

I tried to share those revelations upon returning home

My friends looked at me with that dazed look you give one when you think they’ve lost it

I still made little sense of this

I was trying to process it

Or figure out what it meant for me

Another trip to Ireland in early 2020 reinforced these thoughts and cemented relationships there

I arrived back to my home in Colorado just as Covid-19 was being openly talked about, but before any lockdowns

The lockdown has given me the time, and space to process those thoughts birthed in 2019

Given me the opportunity to be at peace with experiencing a relaxed schedule

Provided opportunities to have communications with friends and family scattered around the globe and revealed the shared trauma of this pandemic

No one wonders “why” someone is concerned—at least not in my circle

It’s my hope we will come through this fear, into love and thus come alive

Come alive to the purposes created for each of us

Ah, but first we have to recognize and acknowledge those purposes

I suspect that revelation process will be different for each of us

Some may even fight these truths, preferring instead to return to what was

My pragmatic side knows this and thus expects the “coming through” will not necessarily allow us to land in a “happy place”

There will be “happy places” but also some rough patches

There may be some friends cemented for life, but also some lost

I hope I can cling to the values learned through this process

I hope to make them an integral part of me

I hope more of us find the “happy place” and can affect and influence those still searching

I hope we will release the aspects of life that were—let them drift into a space of “what was”

And thus be able to allow those conditions to remain in that space.

Remaking…

Pause.

Projects.

We are at home. Like many of you, really at home.

Perhaps for the first time in ages.

At our house that has meant projects.

House projects for my hubby.

Mostly writing for me.

This last week, I took on a project to remake an old family dresser.

The chest is sturdy, but made from an era when all wood furniture was dark.

Dark has become so foreboding.

It was time for a change.

I had a plan, however when I started sanding the finish from the old piece of furniture, the wood spoke something different to me.

Plan abandoned.

I kept on working.

As I was doing the finish coat, I found my mind wandering to memories of my father.

He was the one who introduced me to wood and with great supervision, would allow me to work with him in the basement.

Those thoughts bought a smile to mind.

For those of you who know me, there aren’t many times I speak of my dad.

My memories aren’t very pleasant.

In the last few years, I’ve been learning about how we can remake our memories.

Instead of replaying in your mind the same sad stories, stop those thoughts and replace them with more pleasant memories.

I’ve been working on that memory project for a few years.

It doesn’t change any realities, but it changes what my first thoughts are when thinking about my father.

This weekend wrapped up a remaking project and contributed to an ongoing remaking project.

It’s never too late to work on remaking…

The Virus…

I’ve been “Writing Through the Pandemic.” It’s been an interesting process which sometimes surprises me at what surfaces. This was one of those surprises. You can find some these writing on my blog under the following menu options: “Writing Categories” and then select “Pandemic”. Feel free to leave your comments or write your own thoughts.

Together, we’ll get through this!

When released to be free after centuries of being locked within only one species, I finally had the opportunity for my greatest prize. I jumped from animal to man, not sure what would happen to me. Would I live in a different host; would I thrive or die? I made the leap, and things started to happen. I discovered I could live in a man. And man because of his movement and social interactions with others brought me in contact with other men. Oh, and how easy it was to jump from one human to another. At first I made these movements undetected. Even the man didn’t know I was now part of him, yet that didn’t feed my growing feelings of independence and importance. I found if I remained silent within the man, I could multiply within him and others. Then, after I had grown within humans, I made myself known. I learned a lot about man during the weeks when I was just growing strong and multiplying within him. I learned he likes to be in control of his life and things around him. Soon I revealed myself. I attacked his body. I made him ache; I made him cough until his breathing became difficult. Finally, he sought help from other men who thought they had the power to heal. Some of these healers helped, but many of them were unaware I had already invaded their precious bodies as well. I continued to grow and gain power. I was unaware of how mobile man was and how vast the space I would be able to control. Yes. I was in control, invading human bodies in many places. Ok, so some recovered, but many died. It was because of me, because of the power I wielded.

Now I look at man, racing time in an effort to control my growth; trying to limit my reach for power and growth. Oh, did I say power? Yes, I can understand how a man comes to desire power. When you get attention, it feeds something within and you want more. So, yes, I want more power. I want more recognition of how impactful I am. See, over there—entire cities have shut down. Who has the power now? Oh, latest news flash—countries have closed their borders. Man’s movement is limited; no longer can he roam the earth at will. 

I heard some scientists are studying me. What do they hope to find? How to become as powerful as me? Suggestions include they are looking for an immunization to neutralize me. Really? They think they can do that. We’ll see…

Humility

We’re each on earth at this point in time, traveling to…
No one knows for sure.
Early in the year, we found ourselves confident; we knew the direction.
We thought we knew at the beginning of the year.
We were all headed “someplace” in 2020.

And then Covid-19 hit.

We’re all home now. 
It took some longer than others yet now, we’re home.
Now, we’re living life on “pause.”

Winter Lights

Are things getting in your way, in your home?
In your previous rush to get somewhere, did you lose sight of what’s important to you?
Has the time of “pause” provided the opportunity to find your true north?
Has revelation set in that around the globe, we are all shuttered?
Life has slowed.
Has the change of pace, caused you to ponder your life’s ultimate travel plans?
Do you recognize others are on the same uncertain roads?

When life moves from “pause” to “reset” I expect there will be a gradual buildup of activity.
I expect many of us to come out of our homes, a little dazed.
Uncertain, perhaps, of what to expect from this point in history. 
I expect some will burst out of their homes expecting life to pick up where it left off.
Will they bump into an unexpected reality, 
or will life simply return to what it was before Covid-19?

Time

The sun comes up; the sun goes down.
Another day, another night.
So we count time.

Covid-19 hit.

The Hands of Time
The Hands of Time

Time has stopped, or so it seems to me.
I cook, I read, I write.
I do creative things.
I connect with others.

The calendar says it is April.
Really?
Did the sun rise and set so many times?

There is no rush. No rush to fix or finish dinner.
No rush to get somewhere on time.
No rush to finish projects, just gradually work on them.

The sun comes up
Prepare morning drinks and luxuriate as my husband and I sit and chat.
Enjoy the morning sky with clouds drifting by.
Notice the few neighbors out walking their dogs.
Listen to the ever growing population of birds arriving for the season.
Open patio doors to breathe in the cool, fresh morning mountain air.

Another cup of tea. Snuggle into a chair by the window, and allow the sun to warm the body.
Get lost in the day with either a book, writing, or communicating with a friend who is also sheltered in her house. Or spend some time on one of those creative endeavors.

Fix dinner and enjoy the quiet of the night.
The sun goes down.
Followed by peaceful sleep.

During this time of “Sheltering In-Place,” I’m part of a writing group. The group is writing about this time, fears, feelings, concerns. Different prompts and readings are used to generate inspiration. Sometimes I’m surprised at what surfaces. None of us in the group have experienced a time such as this. I’ll be sharing some of my writings generated from the group. You'll find them under the menu option, Writing Categories and then Pandemic. Feel free to leave your comments or write you own thoughts.

My House…

…sits high above the road, with peaked ceilings and lots of windows that allow the sky to enter and be part of my daily life. That could mean blue skies with white clouds, or grey skies with dark angry clouds waiting to dump something on me. Some days it simply means living in a cloud with the ability to see very little. Cloudless nights are the best when the stars are sparkling against the navy background, appearing so close I think I can reach out to grab a couple just for me.

Watching the clouds race across the sky
Evening Colors filling the sky

My house has been filled with unique aromas the last two weeks as I’ve allowed my creative side freedom to explore recipes from a Turkish cookbook a friend gave me before departing this valley I now call home. Distinct aromas and unique flavors from combinations of spices I’ve rarely used before. I never knew how much dill changes the flavor of beef; or tomatoes when skinned and deseeded, cooked with stock have a less acidic taste. These flavors are different and fun from how I normally cook—not strong or spicy hot, just different. We’ve found the food to be hearty and very filling. The cooking has been an adventure, but also exhausting. Most of the meals are labor intensive in their preparation. I now understand why the dishes are most often undertaken for company as a way to honor someone with a meal. So I can say, I’ve been honoring my husband, honoring us, honoring that we have each other to share this time with. I may have one more Turkish meal in me for this season, afterwards the book will go back on the shelf and I’ll return to meals and culinary delights we’ve enjoyed at different times or try something completely different.

I walk the switch back driveway down to the mailbox and last year’s dead grasses and the sage brush are still moist from last night’s snow. The fragrance of sage hits me and reminds me of first moving here eight years ago and the wonder I experienced the first time I opened the door and smelled sage. I was so surprised and then surprised I hadn’t expected this. Our property sits on hundred-year-old sage plants. How could I expect to be surrounded by this plant and yet not smell it? The pleasure of the aroma and memories of that naivety always bring a smile to face and are part of what makes me feel safe to be at home.

I savor the simple pleasures. It’s a way to keep the pandemic at arm’s length from me. To date, we personally know of no one who’s succumbed to the virus. A piece of me wonders how long that will be my truth, and I push those thoughts away. I’m aware each of us, collectively everyone, is being touched by this pandemic and the impacts will be long and far reaching. I push away the thoughts about how long it will be before we return to our normal activities.

I push away…

During this time of “Sheltering In-Place,” I’m part of a writing group. The group is writing about this time, fears, feelings, concerns. Different prompts and readings are used to generate inspiration. Sometimes I’m surprised at what surfaces. None of us in the group have experienced a time such as this. I’ll be sharing some of my writings generated from the group. You'll find them under the menu option, Writing Categories and then Pandemic. Feel free to leave your comments or write you own thoughts.

Accomplishment minus Satisfaction

In the midst of the current pandemic, we’ve found ourselves with more time at home. There has been a task at my house I’ve been saying “if I just had some uninterrupted time at home, I would get that done.”

So, due to the pandemic, I have time at home. I’ve found tackling the task difficult to do. Not because the task is so hard, I just lacked enthusiasm to start and stick with the project to completion.

It took me over a week to complete the project once I began. What’s interesting to me, is that I realize it was not a question time. The question proved to be motivation.

For whatever reason, I made cleaning my office/art room into something so daunting that I was avoiding even beginning.

Finally, desk space…

I can say it is complete. I’ve been waiting to start a project in the room until I completed the clean-up. Now I’m able to begin creating something I want to do. Why am I not filled with a sense of satisfaction for cleaning up my work space?

Do you have a project or task that you’ve been putting off and can’t seem to do it?

And why?

Spring… is coming to the mountains!

The air is filled with birds singing, happy for the promise of warmer weather.

Yesterday, while on my way to town, I saw my first bluebird of the season.

Yeah!

They are absolutely my favorite.

From now through summer I’ll have the pleasure of seeing the vibrant, electric blue darting in the tree branches, or flying in the air.

It always brings a smile to my face.

Let the warmer weather come.

Transition Week

My week in photos…

Sunday afternoon with friends at Mucross House

Sunday at Mucross

Tuesday at Inch Beach after Bible Study

Tues with Judy at Inch Beach

Wednesday at Adare Manor

Wednesday Full view of Adare Manor

Friday, drive home from Denver

Friday Travel from Denver to Carbondale

Friday, view from our home

Friday view from Home

Saturday, home town

Saturday Home Town trip

Just us…

Just us

Now it’s time to sort out all the events of the last four weeks.